The Orlando Magic didn’t make a big move before Thursday’s NBA trade deadline, but their social media team went from strength to strength in response to their minor deal.
While announcing that Bol Bol and PJ Dozier are heading to Orlando from Boston (with a trade of second-round picks), the Magic issued a greeting to the other incoming party to the trade.
“Welcome to the O, Cash Considerations,” their tweet read.
The Utah Jazz, who play Orlando on Friday in Salt Lake City, made their pick a day before the deadline when they shipped the expiring contract of Joe Ingles, their oldest player, Elijah Hughes and cash to Portland for Nickeil Alexander-Walker. (Trail Blazers) and Juancho Hernangomez (Spurs) in a three-team trade.
Ingles recently suffered a season-ending knee injury, so the Jazz knew Ingles would no longer play under his current contract, which expires after the 2021-22 season. But officially bidding farewell to Ingles, who has been in Utah for eight years, stirred up emotions around Jazzland, even though it was a tax-wise tax-saving deal.
“Today hurts,” Ingles tweeted. “I knew it was a possibility but I didn’t want to believe it, we’ve been lucky enough to call this place home for 8 years! I have a lot more to say, but I’ll grab a beer and relax with some good friends. Go win guys! I’ll always be watching.”
Ingles could go back to a smaller contract after completing rehab on his torn ACL which will soon be surgically repaired.
It’s unclear how Alexander-Walker and Hernangomez will fit into the rotation, but after a tough January 4-12, Utah extended its February push to 4-0 by thrashing the Golden State Warriors 111-85 on Wednesday.
Utah trailed 13-0 and, after falling back to take the lead, gave up the first eight points of the second half to fall behind the Warriors again. But the Jazz outshot Golden State the rest of the way, outscoring them 2-1 (56-28) in the final 21 minutes.
That fine defensive performance came with Rudy Gobert still sidelined with a calf injury. Hassan Whiteside stepped up with seven blocked shots, 17 rebounds and nine points to complete a well-balanced night from Donovan Mitchell (14 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists). Bojan Bogdanovic scored 23.
“They know what people are saying,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder said, referring to quotes from other players and pundits that Utah’s defense was less than stellar without Gobert. “It’s a challenge for us sometimes, and they take it personally.”
The Magic began a four-game road trip on Tuesday with a 113-95 win at Portland, which had just traded longtime Blazer guard CJ McCollum to New Orleans. Orlando had just suffered two nasty losses at home.
“Everyone shared the ball. We had a lot of selfless plays when one person could have shot but tried a better shot,” said Cole Anthony, who scored 23 points and dished out nine of 34 assists. his team. “That was the kind of energy we had as a team tonight and it’s contagious when that happens.”
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